Wayback 2010, this is the first time I got to have an oven (gas oven), which is named Baby Westy ^_^. I was so excited to bake a Brazo de Mercedes, but unfortunately, it was very hard for Westy to cope up with my beginning skills and the pressure she got makes her upset, producing an undercooked (sticky merengue). Those were the moments that kills my enthusiasm in creating/baking anything related to egg white T_T I can clearly remember how random people (who have a better oven) tells me (I never had a problem with baking). That's the starting point that I constructively think why does it went wrong.
I was right, it was not my way of cooking, it was the limitations of my baby (Westy) which was not pointed out to a novice baker like me (I just realized I should have asked at least a culinary student that time haha).
My first trial of Brazo the Mercedes (see how it failed BIG TIME) O_o
Now, I am a proud baker (which until now, I am considering myself novice), to present my recipe for Brazo de Mercedes, to share for those who wanted to bake simple cakes and inspire them to bake more. (Don't worry peeps, I know the feeling and I completely understand how it feels to be frustrated for I have been there MANY MANY TIMES *_^). I hope this simple post of mine would encourage and our starters out there to love baking :)
BRAZO DE MERCEDES RECIPE: (inspired by PANLASANG PINOY RECIPE)
Ingredients for the Custard Filling:
-10 egg yolks
-1/2 c. condensed milk
-3/4 c. evaporated milk
-1/4 c. ground almonds (optional)
-1 tsp. vanilla
-2 tbsps. unsalted butter
-lemon juice/lime juice
Ingredients for the Merengue Roll:
-10 egg whites
-1 tsp. cream of tartar
-1 c. sugar
-1 tsp. vanilla
Procedure for the Custard Filling:
1. Separate egg whites with the egg yolk. Make sure that the bowls are clean and free from oil
2. Beat the yolks, condensed milk & evaporated milk until desired consistency. It should be done on a heavy saucepan or a double boiler. Keep on stirring to avoid scorching.
3. When desired consistency was achieved, add the butter, vanilla and the lemon juice. Lemon or lime juice should be according to your taste. Fold in the almonds.
4. Cover with a plastic food wrapper or a parchment paper to avoid forming of skin.
5. Let it cool.
Procedure for the Merengue Roll:
1. Pre-heat the oven to 340° F/170° C.
2. Line a 15" x 10" baking tray with baking paper. Baking paper must be higher than the sides. Grease it or spray with a non-stick baking spray.
3. Beat the egg whites and the cream of tartar until frothy (bubbles form).
4. Gently pour sugar until stiff peaks form (but not dry). You will be able that it is in it's peak form if the merengue doesn't fall down when the bowl is in it's upside down position.
5. Whisk in the vanilla extract.
6. Spread evenly the merengue batter. Using a cake comb, draw a line to make a design. (You may use a fork)
7. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the merengue is golden brown.
Procedure in assembling the Brazo de Mercedes Cake Roll:
1. Let the merengue cool down. You will notice that the merengue deflates but do not panic. That is normal.
2. Sprinkle enough amount of confectioner's sugar on the top of the merengue (golden brown part).
3. Cover the sprinkled part with another baking paper, then top it with the same size of a baking tray.
4. Flip it on the other side.
5. Gently peel off the baking paper to reveal the other side of the merengue.
6. Spread the cooled custard filling starting from the center.
7. Spread evenly over the whole merengue.
8. Using the baking paper where the merengue roll is placed, gently but quickly roll it.
9. Turn the roll upside down.
10. Let it cool on the fridge before serving.